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43 Cards in this Set

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What are some common features of Lukasz "Dr. Luke" Gottwald's style?
Lukasz Gottwald (1) tends to write tense, excited verses, soaring, catchy/anthem-like choruses, (2) combines acoustic instruments with 80s-style synthesized sounds, and (3) he mixes styles in ways that resemble the tradition of the “house remix."
Who are some artists Ron Fair has produced?
Ron Fair has produced Christina Aguilera, Keyisha Cole, M.J. Blige, the Black-eyed Peas/Fergie, the Pussycat Dolls, and Slayer.
What is a major limit to our understanding of the music of Black communities in the U.S. during the 18th-, 19th- and early 20th- centuries?

Until the 1890s, (1) most Black musical culture was oral; (2) it was suppressed by slave owners and other authorities, (3) national obsession with “Minstrelsy”—mostly parodies of black culture—obscured the reality of Black culture and music, both in written music and in individuals' testimony about it.

What is a diaspora?

A diaspora is forced or coerced dispersion of a people, sharing a history and way-of-life, into new and often hostile cultural surroundings.

What is the difference between “melody” and “accompaniment?

(This question is obvious to some students, who might find the answer overly analytical; but if you aren't sure you know these words, take the time to think about them!)


Melody is the part of a composition that most often carries its identity; the part you're likely to sing if you want to remember the tune or remind someone of it. In songs, the melody is the musical shape given to the lyrics. Accompaniment consists of everything else—chords on a piano or guitar, or larger groups of instruments playing notes that support the melody and complement it, but are not the melody itself.

How do accompaniments in parlor songs typically differ from those in folk songs?

Parlor songs emphasize accompaniments that sound like European Art music, and that tend to be very simple—mostly repeating chords that an amateur musician can play at the piano. Many folk songs in European traditions don't truly have accompaniments; instruments tend all to play the melody, or a version of it.

What are two typical features of folk music?

A flexible tempo, with rhythms sometimes hard to predict or follow. Accompaniment = the same tune as the singer. Repetitive melody, underlying non-repetitive lyrics that tell a changing story with jokes, tragic events, or other surprises. Strongly contrasted meanings are connected under the same static melody, and produce interesting poetic tension as one element changes and the other stays the same.

What is a typical relationship between a sung melody and the text, in the folk songs Ruth Crawford collected?
Singers like to sing the melody "straight," as though to say "this is the tune"; there is relatively little interest in changing the melody or inflecting it for dramatic purposes, or to express new emotions.
How does post-civil war Minstrelsy differ from the earlier music of Thomas Dartmouth Rice?
Minstrelsy prior to the Civil War, for example with Thomas Dartmouth Rice's character "Jim Crow," was a parody of black music, dance, and language that was sometimes put to anti-authoritatian political purposes, building a sense of solidarity between Black sensibilities and the larger working class. When Rice's Jim Crow character was imitated after the Civil War, this satirical character devolved into a simpler form of cultural insult.
What aspects of “Oh Susannah!” are influenced by minstrelsy?
(1) Reference to the banjo (an instrument of African origins, popular among former slaves). (2) Melody is plaintive and declamatory, like “shouting,” with absurd / intentionally nonsensical lyrics.
What is timbre?
Timbre is a word describing anything about a sound's "quality" that isn't related to loudness or pitch. Timbre is the aspect of a sound that helps you distinguish sound-producing materials like wood, metal, stone, etc., and that distinguishes vowels and consonants from one another. Adjectives like "bright," "dull," "grainy," "smooth," and "hollow", when applied to sounds, are words that describe timbres.
What’s the difference between a rhythm and a beat?
A rhythm is the way notes are proportioned in time, combining long and short in distinctive pattern; all instruments have rhythm and rhythm is among the main features that helps you distinguish one melody or phrase from another. A beat is a rhythm that is a repetitive, regular pulse, usually about the speed you'd tap your foot to.
What motivated Herder to study folk music?
Herder was attracted to “ancient”, pre-Christian roots, and rural and illiterate communities, which he thought would help him discover traditions "unspoiled" by civilization.
How is “Jeannie with the Light Brown Hair” a commodification of Irish identity?

By sounding "pastoral," i.e. natural, pristine, and rural, "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair" connected Irish listeners to familiar features of Irish poetry, and for immigrant who lived in American cities, it connected them to memories of their homeland. But in contrast to folk music, the soaring, memorably “composed” melody and Romantic piano accompaniment of Parlor Song helped bourgeois Irish-Americans see themselves as modern and sophisticated.

What media technologies are involved in the popularization of Stephen Foster's music?
Stephen Foster's music was disseminated primarily as sheet music, to be played on the piano.
What's wrong with the traditional view that the U.S. is a melting pot?

Viewing American society as a melting pot implies a democratic, plural, mixture of cultures that doesn't privilege one voice over another, and it ignores the process of "assimilation," in which immigrants subordinate their values and aesthetics to those of a single dominant culture. (This next bit is not on the mid-term, but you can think about it this way: if America were a melting pot, the popular music of Stephen Foster's / W.C. Handy's eras would consist of multi-layered compositions built on West-African rhythms, Irish fiddle reels, and a dozen other folk musics. Assimilation is the process by which all of those musics took on European Romantic characteristics like soaring 8- and 16-bar melodies, and chords played by pianists and brass bands.)

According to Zora Neale Hurston, what accounts for black cultural expression being "split" between two identities?
African-American communities were characterized by a kind of split identity, Hurston argued, because of the "absence of the concept of privacy" in crowded, impoverished, private lives under slavery; in public life after slavery, African-Americans experienced oscillation between being invisible and being intensely scrutinized, leading to a cultural style that protects some of its features, while performing a distortion of them, to a world of outsiders.
When did the Bell brothers and Thomas Edison begin marketing phonograph players and recordings?

In the 1890s, the Bells (Alexander and Chichester), along with their competitor Thomas Edison, improved the phonograph steadily, to create a reliable, marketable technology, and founded the first record companies.

How does electric recording affect singers and their performance styles in the late 1920s?

In the late 1920s, "electric recording" techniques allow a far more sensitive response to varied loudness of musical performances. Singers could sing quietly, and explore dynamic ranges, enabling the distribution of more dramatic and more intimate performances.

What main features define early “blues” singing?

Early blues singing is characterized by blue-notes, which fall between standard pitch categories in Wester musical instruments, and syncopation: rhythms that place emphatic notes on weak beats of a bar, or between them.

How are "Piedmont" and "Delta" guitar styles different?

The Piedmont guitar style is distinguished by its finger-picking approach which gave it a rag-time kind of rhythm. The Delta style is more standard of the Blues, and has a highly rhythmic structure that typically features clashing rhythms accompanied by strong vocals

Whom did Ma Rainey strongly influence?

Bessie Smith, Ida Cox, Clara Smith

What are some of Bessie Smith's distinctive qualities as a 'blues' singer?

Extraordinary breath control, creative use of vocal slides and melisma, clear diction (appeal to white audiences), ability to improvise

Why is the term "jazz" troublesome?

if you have a style whose only meaning is racial, then it isn't really about music any more—anytime a black musician is successful, and any time a white musician imitated that success, it was called "jazz." That meant that creative black musicians couldn't be regarded in more universal terms. They were always called "jazz composers" or "jazz pianists" and never just composers or pianists.

How did "race records" contribute to Black identity in the U.S.?
Because the category was promoted to consumers across the whole nation, it raised Black consumers' awareness of one another's communities, and brought those communities together into an identity, and a sense of common experience, that mattered to them.
What happens to jazz in the 1920s?

The economic boom helped jazz reach wider audiences in part because it was associated with entertainment styles favored by the wealthiest urban consumers. It also helped because smaller troupes (sometimes called "Minstrel Troupes") added larger numbers of instruments, which both expanded the sound and the expressive range, and helped associate that music with 1920s modernism.

Who was Louis Armstrong's mentor?

Joe "King" Oliver

Name two features that distinguish Kansas City Swing from earlier New Orleans styles.
Kansas City Swing involved (1) a larger number of instruments (2) boogie-woogie bass lines. (Heterophony is also a characteristic, but it has this in common with New Orleans jazz.)
What main feature distinguishes a typical jazz band in 1925 from one in 1935?
Typically, the bands in the 20s were smaller than those in the 1930s.
Define (and understand) basic terms associated with jazz: blue-note, syncopation, turn-around, improvisation, arrangement, and swing.
a. blue-note: a note between the "happy" major third and the "sad" minor thirdb. syncopation: emphasis on a note that falls on a weak beat, or between beats.c. turn-around: intense, momentous musical sounds at the end of a phrase, especially in the 12th bar of a 12-bar blues.d. improvisation: spontaneous invention of new musical ideas in the midst of a performancee. arrangement: the creative practice of supporting an existing tune or melody with new accompaniments, new harmonic inflection, new rhythmic characterf. swing: (i) a level of coordination and mastery that creates a rhythmic lilt and evokes a visceral response ... (ii) an uneven division of 8th notes, which doesn't increase the unevenness all the way to a shuffle (2:1 (2/3:1/3)) ... (iii) a genre of jazz music that coincides with the height of the big-band era.
What are the major instrument categories in a typical big band, and what are they good for?

"Rhythm" Section -- drums, bass, guitar, and piano — their short, punctuated sounds (as opposed to long, sustaining tones) make them ideal for keeping the beat / maintaining the tempo for the rest of the ensembleSaxophones (and other winds, which are less common): choir-like, smooth phrases; saxophones are highly agile and can play quickly togetherBrass: punctuating sounds, sharp attacks, interjections. Use of mutes can vary the timbre (sound quality) widely, sometimes even sounding animal or human.includes Trumpets: Solo trumpets were the most important melodic instrument in early jazz; trumpeters were often leaders. The best instruments for loudness and accentand Trombones: help to "blend" the saxes and trumpets

How do Alain Locke's early views of jazz and blues differ from those of Langston Hughes?

Alain Locke looked down on Black musical forms like the popular blues and other early jazz bands, which he perceived to be designed for white entertainment, and sometimes derogatory to Black identity. Langston Hughes and other Harlem Renaissance writers praised the artistry and sophistication of Ellington and other creative jazz musicians in the 1930s.

How did Benny Goodman help to popularize swing?

. Benny Goodman introduced swing band styles to Americans on the "Let's Dance" radio show in 1935.

Why was Benny Goodman’s 1938 concert at Carnegie Hall important in the history of jazz and swing?

(a) The 1938 Carnegie Hall concert (featured in the Stowe reading) which Goodman headlined signaled the coming-of-age of swing and jazz, as "high art" forms, deserving a place on a stage that was normally reserved for the most acclaimed performers of classical music in the European tradition. (b) Although Goodman accepted the responsibility to represent jazz to the art-music crowd, he insisted on bringing many important Black musicians—members of the bands led by Ellington, Basie, and others—onto the same stage as collaborators. This was a highly visible form of musical desegregation rarely seen in the 1930s.

What marks 1935 as the beginning of the swing era (three main points)?

(a) Count Basie took the helm of a swing band made up of Bennie Moten's Kansas City Swing musicians, and broadened their style on very popular tours that influenced New York bands.(b) Benny Goodman introduced swing to national audiences (and rural audiences in particular) on the "Let's Dance" radio show.(c) Fred Astaire's film "Top Hat" (1935) and "Swing Time" made the style both accessible and popular, fusing it memorably with romantic Tin-Pan Alley tunes that were by then at the core of American tastes.

Who were some major Tin Pan Alley songwriters?

Four major Tin-Pan Alley Songwriters: Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, George Gershwin, and Cole Porter.

Whose band was a breakthrough act for Frank Sinatra?

Frank Sinatra was first popular as a singer with the Tommy Dorsey band.

Who were some of the major bandleaders in the swing era?

Major early innovators of swing include pianists Bennie Moten (Kansas City, who popularized swing's "boogie" bass lines) and Fletcher Henderson (New York, among the most innovative arrangers), improvising singer and style guru Cab Calloway (New York), and pianist/composerDuke Ellington. In the late 1930s and early 1940s, pianist Count Basie popularized the Kansas City style he inherited from Moten (see question 35), trombonists Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller started all-white bands that became popularizers of swing in their many performances on college campuses and at USO shows, and clarinetist Benny Goodman brought the style to national audiences with his frequent radio and film appearances, often with bands that "integrated" by including black musicians.

Where did the "Charleston" originate?

The Charleston originated in working-class Black communities of Charleston, South Carolina.

Diagram a stop-time blues form and understand the relationships between the sections. (Really do this!) How many lines are in each section? Where do lines contrast or stay them same, musically?

The house started rockin' (a)


We really had a time (b)


The house was rockin' (a)


I almost lost my mind (b') (A)


I couldn't boogie real slow with the blue lights way down low (B)


I couldn't boogie real slow with the blue lights way down low (B)



What are the five elements of 1950s Rock and Roll, and which four are shared by Rhythm & Blues and Rockabilly?

.Swing or shuffle rhythm


back beat


=a strong presence for beats 2 and 4 normally the weak beats of the bar


-emphasized by guitar chords/and or snare drum


-Small ensembles, simple arrangements


-blues-influenced singing


-Television-ready personalities

Whose footsteps did Hank Williams' career follow?

Rufus Payne

What would you describe as the catalyst/motivation for the "second" migration?
A catalyst for the second migration would be the movement of blacks from rural America into urban areas.